Little Jewelry Chest of Drawers Make-over

ReVamped and upcycled jewelry boxes and chests are always good sellers for me in my booth at the antique mall.  Finding the right pieces to make-over can be a bit of a challenge though.

The first thing I always do is look inside the drawers.  So many of the old jewelry boxes have that cheapo velvet fabric lining the drawers, and it’s usually stained and dirty and impossible to remove.  So I pass if the drawers (innards, as I like to call them!) aren’t clean.

The next thing to check for, if you are going to be repainting or re-covering your piece, is to be sure that the drawer pulls/knobs are removable.  On this piece that I recently made-over, I had already removed the drawer pulls when I remembered that I needed to take pictures!

A time or two in the past, I HAVE bought pieces that I could not remove the knobs from, and just painted the whole thing, knobs and all; but I avoid that as much as possible.  I just sand the paint off the pulls/knobs as much as possible in those instances.

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How sweet are the drawer pulls on this piece!?!?

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The insides of the insides of the drawers were clean and painted black, which was totally fine.  Except for the fact that I was re-painting the piece an off-white and the contrast was quite stark.  My solution?  Glue some paper to the inside bottom of the drawers.  I used old dictionary pages this time.  In the past, and on full size dressers/chests I have used; pretty wrapping paper, vintage wall paper, vintage sheet music, old road atlas pages . . . really, ANY kind of paper that you can cut to size will work.

I also added some of the same paper to the recessed bottom of the chest, just for fun!  Don’t forget to paint (or paper!) the BACK also.

Before and after.

*This piece has already SOLD in my booth at Stars Antique Mall in Portland, Oregon.

Outdated / updated Jewelry chest

Small wood jewelry chests are an item that I am always on the hunt for.  They are fairly quick to make-over (IF you pick & choose carefully!) and usually sell quite well.

P1220303This was a great medium sized one!  I normally see a LOT of the small ‘2 drawer’ kinds and the HUGE ones.  This one is just right.

POP QUIZ:  What’s the FIRST thing you do when you spot an item like this???

P1220305If you answered ‘check the drawers’ you are a TRUE follower of my blog!  Probably 9 out of 10 jewelry boxes that I look at have ‘icky’ drawer innards.  And that cheap velvety fabric (usually bright RED or mustard yellow!) they line the drawers with does NOT come off and is impossible to clean!  I was absolutely delighted to find CLEAN and TURQUOISE drawers in this one.

P1220304The drawer pulls usually don’t come off, so plan for that in your painting options.

P1220314I used a small very stiff brush to paint around and behind the drawer pulls; then my regular paint brush for the rest of it.  Two coats then hand sanded the edges.

P1220317 Usually I’d stencil a design or word on the top of the jewelry box, but, I’ve decided to ‘leave things plain’ for a while and see if they sell better.  If not, I can always add to them later on.

This piece will be making its way to my booth at Stars very soon.